Students at Catholic school get impromptu lesson on papal succession
The principal hopes the students will benefit from this and learn more about the process behind selecting a pope.
"I hope it's not faith-shaking," Colosimo said. "I hope it's faith-affirming. I hope they come to realize the church is made up of a body of people, human beings that have all kinds of needs and wants and desires and abilities. We have always relied on leadership of human people to guide the church.
"If we have faith, then what we ought to be saying is thank you to Pope Benedict and we ought to be looking forward to who the next pope will be and who knows what we might get. I think our faith would have us be optimistic about the new pope and what the new pope can offer and bring to the church."
Veltri told her class that the speculation is that the next pope may come from an emerging country somewhere in Africa or South America. Colosimo said he could see that or the election of an European, as with others. An American pope would be "the blackest of the black sheep."
Junior Dominic Colosimo said a pope from the United States would be "cool," but is mostly hoping to see someone elected like the pope he has chosen to highlight in his pope project for Veltri's class.
"I would like a pope like John Paul II because he did great things and he was pope for a long time, and I think when you're pope for a longer time you have an ability to create more relationships with people around the world and do more good," Dominic Colosimo said.
He said he still remembers watching the election and initiation of Pope Benedict XVI and is anxious to learn more about the election process and how the resignation works.
"It is history and I feel privileged that I've been able to now see two different popes elected in my lifetime in such a young age," he said. "It's an honor."
Veltri's class will continue to discuss the pope's resignation and the election process in the conclave in upcoming weeks. She told the students Pope Benedict XVI has said he wants to live out his life in "solitude and prayer" and that she assumes he will be buried at St. Peter's Basilica with his predecessors.
"Will he still be called Pope or will be go back to Cardinal Ratzinger?" a student asked.
"That's a great question," Veltri said. "I don't know. Again, uncharted territory."
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